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Google News Initiative (GNI) Innovation Challenge For Middle East Africa & Turkey

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Google News Initiative (GNI) Innovation Challenge For Middle East Africa & Turkey

As part of this program, the GNI will fund a set of projects from around the world that meet specified criteria, with the intent of producing learning and thought leadership to share with the wider industry.

The second GNI Innovation Challenge in the Middle East, Turkey & Africa region focuses on reader engagement and new business models in any form. It follows the highly successful first round of the Challenge for the region which saw 21 projects from 13 countries receive $1.93 million in funding. As before, Google will fund selected projects up to USD $150,000 and will finance up to 70% of the total project cost. Special discretion on the total project cap may be considered by the Jury depending on the scale and impact of a very large collaborative effort.

Application Eligibility Requirements

The Middle East, Turkey & Africa GNI Innovation Challenge is open to organizations of every size, including freelancers and sole traders, that aim to produce innovative, original journalism and to enlighten citizens with trustworthy journalistic content, whose projects focus on encouraging a more sustainable news ecosystem.

Eligible Regions

Incorporated organizations need to be incorporated in one of the eligible countries within (countries listed in Terms & Conditions) in the Middle East, Turkey & Africa. Unincorporated organizations need to be registered in the Middle East, Turkey and Africa or, if unregistered, have their principal place of business based in the region.

Eligible Projects

All ideas are welcome but we require all projects to have clear indicators showing the impact of the project from a user perspective and/or from a business perspective (eg: audience indicators, business plan when relevant). Successful projects will also need to be delivered within one year.

GNI encourage innovative projects – focused on but not limited to – the areas below:

  • Business Models
  • Distribution
  • Interface
  • Social
  • Workflow

Projects can be experimental but must be measurable with well-defined goals. We encourage applicants to clearly underline the opportunities of the project by providing clear key performance indicators (KPIs). KPIs should have a significant digital component.

Projects will be evaluated against five main criteria:

  1. Impact on the news ecosystem: Projects should demonstrate potential for significant positive impact on the creation of new revenue streams and/or change the way people consume digital news.
  2. Innovation: Preferred projects will be innovative (use of technology, business model, new reader engagement approaches etc) and be transformative for the applicant and for users.
  3. Feasibility: Projects should demonstrate clear indicators and metrics, or even a business plan when relevant, and set out key risks and mitigation steps.
  4. Inspiration: How can the project help news organizations learn from each other? Willingness to share knowledge, open source code or/and to contribute to the improvement of the ecosystem overall.
  5. Diversity: Preferred projects will be able to demonstrate their self-defined commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion whether that is within their audience, organisation or content. Google is committed to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and works to support companies/projects which are inline with such values.

Project Funding

Google will fund up to $150,000 for selected projects. Special discretion on the total project cap may be considered by The Jury depending on the scale and impact of a very large collaborative effort. Google will finance up to 70% of the overall costs of the selected projects. The remaining self-funded costs can be operational costs. Eligible expenses include personnel costs, engineering costs and the purchase or licensing of any equipment, tools, hardware, software and other assets or materials needed for the project as well as marketing expenses (capped to 20% of the total amount requested). Editorial expenses are not part of the eligible costs and will not be covered. Funding may not be spent on general and overhead costs.

Application Process

The application window opens on 22 February 2021 at 10 GMT, and closes on Monday, April 12 at 23:59 GMT. Only online applications in English will be considered. Applicants are asked to provide descriptions, detailed project plans and budget information via our online application form. They are also required to accept the Middle East, Turkey & Africa GNI Innovation Challenge Application Terms and Conditions.

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Google News Initiative (GNI) Innovation Challenge 2021

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SCHOLARSHIP

Ian Parry Scholarship Prize 2021 For Young Photo Journalists

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Ian Parry Scholarship Prize 2021 For Young Photo Journalists

Ian Parry was a photojournalist who died while on assignment for The Sunday Times during the Romanian revolution in 1989. He was just 24 years of age. Aidan Sullivan, then picture editor, and Ian’s friends and family created the Ian Parry Scholarship in order to build something positive from such a tragic death. Each year we hold an international photographic competition for young photographers who are either attending a full-time photographic course or are under 24.

The Ian Parry Scholarship is divided into two categories: The Sunday Times Award for Achievement and The Canon Award for Potential.

The entry criteria for both is the same and the judges will make their decisions based on the individual merits of the entries. Entrants must submit a portfolio and a clear proposal of a project they would undertake if they won the scholarship.

Benefits

Benefits include:

Each winner will receive $3,500 towards their chosen project.

Canon Europe continues to support the Scholarship and loans equipment to the winners.

Attend a portfolio review day with leading industry experts in London (covid permitting).

Mentorship Programme, we offer a year-long personal Mentorship to the winner of The Canon Award for Potential.

Both winners will have the opportunity to take part in the Transmissions Programme at Visa Pour L’Image in Perpignan.

World Press Photo, automatically accepts the winner of the Achievement Award into its final list of nominees for the Joop Swart Masterclass in Amsterdam.

Your work will appear in The Sunday Times Magazine, our media sponsor.

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Ian Perry Scholarship Prize 2021

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